Sunday 25 September 2016

Gardai seize over €50k in cash, jewellery, high-end watches and tracking devices in early morning raids

Conor Feehan and Ken Foy

Published 11/03/2016 | 07:30

Gardai at the scene of one of the raids this morning. Inset, Eoin 'Scarface' O'Connor
Gardai at the scene of one of the raids this morning. Inset, Eoin 'Scarface' O'Connor
Gardai at the scene of the search this morning
Search operations commenced at premises at 10 private residences in the Kevin Street and Pearse Street areas in Dublin involving 80 Gardaí today

Gardaí investigating a south Dublin criminal gang this morning have seized over €50k in cash, drugs, jewellery, high value watches, and tracking devices in a series of raid this morning,

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In the series of raids which targeted 10 premises throughout Dublin, gardai also seized a quantity of drugs and financial documents.

Up to 80 gardai were involved in searching ten different homes in the capital’s south inner city in raids that began at 6.30am.

Addresses that were the focus of attention this morning included flats, apartments and houses in the Dublin 2, Dublin 8 and Inchicore areas.

Search operations commenced at premises at 10 private residences in the Kevin Street and Pearse Street areas in Dublin involving 80 Gardaí today
Search operations commenced at premises at 10 private residences in the Kevin Street and Pearse Street areas in Dublin involving 80 Gardaí today

At one address in the Liberties, a sniffer dog was brought in to assist in the search of a house which had multiple CCTV cameras on it.

Cousin

Among the properties targeted was a house linked to Eoin ‘Scarface’ O’ Connor (33), who is a first cousin of Regency Hotel murder victim David Byrne and gangster ‘Fat’ Freddie Thompson.

Byrne’s family home was raided by armed officers on Wednesday, but Thompson’s home was not targeted in the course of either search operation this week.

However, a property linked to his cousin ‘Scarface’ O’ Connor in Inchicore was raided by armed gardai today.

O’Connor first came to prominence when the Herald exposed the facial injuries he incurred in an attack at the Planet Love music festival in 2008.

In 2010 O’Connor – who has multiple previous convictions – was sentenced to 18 months in jail after he struck an off-duty garda during a football game.

Another Inchicore property  raided was the home of a very close associate of convicted cocaine dealer Gareth Chubb.

Also targeted was a north inner city address linked to  Dean Howe, who was previously arrested by gardai investigating the non fatal shooting of Martin ‘The Viper’ Foley at a Kimmage gym in January 2008.

Gardai also raided a flat in the McDonagh House complex in the south inner city in which a dangerous 28-year-old criminal resides.

This suspect is considered an “enforcer and manager” for the Kinahan cartel’s drug dealing operations in the south inner city.

He is very closely linked with ‘Fat’ Freddie’s brother Richie Thompson (40).

A man was arrested at the McDonagh House complex on foot of an outstanding bench warrant.

A flat of a female associate of the gang in the Pearse House complex on Dublin’s southside was also raided.

Also targeted was the south inner city home of a 33-year-old criminal who is currently facing  charges before the courts.

He is the suspected gunman for a number of shooting incidents, including the attempted murder of car dealer Michael Frazer in Islandbridge in November 2014.

Bomb

He was also arrested by gardai in a major operation in July 2011, in which a viable pipe bomb was seized, but escaped charges in that case.

The south inner city home of a criminal aged in his 20s who acts as a driver for convicted drugs trafficker Greg Lynch was also targeted.

However, Lynch’s home was not raided as part of today’s operation.

Gardai were equipped with battering rams and were prepared to enter homes by force if necessary.

It is understood that detectives do not expect to seize anything approaching Wednesday’s haul, when over €1m worth of assets was taken from close associates of Kinahan gang members.

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